Interesting article that showcases changes in office life. As it states the challenges of a virtual workplace is the loneliness that employees can get caught up in - which is why we see a lot of freelancers and telecommuters yearning to connect with others of their ilk, and tweetups and face to face meetings. By the way, here's a post on web worker daily when I was featured during my freelancing days :-)
The other challenges organizations would face would be to change their culture to facilitate this method of working. The ability to trust people and focus on the deliverables and not merely control the activities. Not too many organizations can make the transition easily.
Excerpts from the article
Imagine a work world with no commute, no corporate headquarters and perhaps not even an office in the physical world at all.
"We don't care where and how you get your work done," said Dan Pelino, general manager of IBM's global health care and life sciences business. "We care that you get your work done."
IBM says it saves $100 million a year in real estate costs because it doesn't need the offices.
The work force at the Accenture management consulting firm is so mobile not even the CEO has an office with his name on the door.
With no corporate headquarters, if you need a work space, you reserve it like a hotel room — checking in and out at a kiosk.
In the future, more companies with scattered work forces and clients may do what the marketing firm Crayon is doing: making its headquarters in cyberspace.
Crayon's workers rarely meet in the physical world — some are in Boston, others are in Nutley, N.J. — but their online alter egos in the virtual world gather once a week.